7 Ways to Unwind After Working from Home

Working from home has become the new normal for many people, more companies are adopting remote work as part of their business operations.

Working from home can be great, but it also has its downsides. As we spend more time working from home, the physical distinction between home and work life has become blurred.

You can easily get consumed by work and not take any time for yourself. This can lead to feeling stressed and overwhelmed.

Taking some time for yourself after working from home has become more important than ever.

How to Relax After Working From Home?

Working from home can be stressful and your post-work routine should include a work cut-off point, exercise, time outdoors, and some non-screen-based activity that gently engages your brain without requiring too much mental effort.

Here’s my list of the 7 best ways for you to relax and unwind after working from home to help keep you as happy and healthy as possible.

1. Create a post-work ritual

Having a routine that works for you to unwind after a day of working from home takes a little trial and error. We’re all different and what works for some may not work for others. Once you have found the right combination for you and your needs – stick to it!

Simple Post Work Ritual

  • Put away your work stuff such as your laptops and documents.
  • Tick off all the tasks you have accomplished for the day.
  • Smile and appreciate the amount of work you have accomplished.
  • Make yourself comfortable by changing to some cozy clothing.
  • Do some simple stretches and release all your work stress.
  • Reward yourself with some simple snacks or drink a cup of your favorite coffee.
  • Take a walk or jog and let your muscles relax after a whole day of sitting at your desk.
  • Have some non-work-related talk or hang out with your friends and family.

We like routine, and knowing that we have a relaxing evening in store helps to improve focus and mood during the day.

Not every day will be perfect, but having a plan is a good start.

2. Establish a cut-off point

There’s no point in trying to unwind when you are still mentally at your desk. Coming home from a day at the office creates a definite beginning and end to the workday which we simply don’t have when our workspace is also our home.

Establish a cut-off point by committing to a time when you will log off for the day and stick to it.

  • If you have a work phone, switch it off.
  • If you have work email notifications, mute them.

Your ability to rest in the evening means you will be able to work better tomorrow – so allow yourself the space you need.

3. Exercise

Exercise releases endorphins which promote feelings of relaxation and help you process the stress of the day. After a day spent sitting at a desk, exercise helps to stretch your legs and back as well as get your blood flowing again.

You don’t have to go and run a marathon, just choose an option that suits your needs and take it from there.

Simple exercises to get maximum endorphin that triggers positive feelings are:

  • Running
  • Brisk walking
  • A gym class (especially with friends)
  • Dancing
  • Aerobics

4. Get outside

A change of scenery mimics the commute of an office job and encourages the switch in mentality between work and home. Once you’ve reached your work cut-off point, try to get out of the house.

This could simply involve a walk around the neighborhood or something a little more organized, like meeting friends for a catch-up.

Unwinding after working from home is much easier when you create physical and mental space between you and your desk.

5. Get Creative

Once you’ve stretched your legs and had some time outdoors, try to avoid a long Netflix session or mindless scrolling on your phone. Finding a way to keep your mind engaged in a low-effort way, while also staying away from screens, mentally transitions you into a relaxed evening at home.

Here are a few post-work activities you can try:

  • Reading, especially books in a style you enjoy and with a relaxing narrative
  • Coloring in, adult coloring books were all the rage a few years ago, and they are making a comeback in the era of working from home
  • Knitting and crochet, keeping your hands busy is soothing to a busy mind
  • Cooking, look up a new recipe and have fun making your evening meal

6. Meditate

Meditating is the practice of slowing down your mind and letting you feel relaxed. Meditation can be as simple as listening to a 5-minute guided mediation on an app, or as complex as sitting in a lotus pose with singing bowls and chanting.

Whatever it looks like for you, meditation will be a key component of your post-work unwinding.

7. Practice good sleep hygiene

Sleep hygiene refers to the practice of optimizing your sleep environment. Sleep can be tricky when your brain is still buzzing from a day at your desk and can be especially tricky when you’re missing that separation of work and home life.

Here are some tips for a better night’s sleep:

  • Switch off all screens at least an hour before bed.
  • If you need your phone in the evening, install a dimmer app to regulate the amount of blue light coming from the screen.
  • Try some essential oils in a diffuser.
  • Keep your bedroom cool, lowering your body temperature before getting into bed will help you fall asleep faster.
  • Use white noise, sleep stories, or guided sleep meditation apps to help switch your mind off 

Why is it important to relax and unwind after work?

Relaxing after work is important for us to help clear out stress and negative thoughts, which can lead to mental and physical health complications, including depression, anxiety, cardiovascular disease, and obesity.

When we are stressed, our body releases a stress hormone called, cortisol, which is a hormone that can have harmful effects on our health if it is released at high levels over a long period of time.

Unwinding and relaxing after work allows individuals to relieve stress and tension from the workday which can help improve moods, increase energy, and improve productivity.

Having the right strategies to help relax and de-stress after a long day working from home become essential for every remote worker.

Unwinding after work can be simple

Taking a few minutes to unwind after work can help you feel more relaxed and prepared for the evening ahead.

There are many different ways to relax, so find what works best for you and make it a part of your routine.

Not only will you feel better mentally and emotionally, but you may also see improvements in your work performance.

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